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Building First Computer - Advice Please

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Hey Guys, Long time member but not posted often really. I'm going to be building my first ever PC and wanted a bit of advice on a few of the parts I have chosen. I'm not a PC gamer, I keep to th…
RnRDave Avatar
7y, 9m agoPosted 7 years, 9 months ago
Hey Guys,

Long time member but not posted often really.

I'm going to be building my first ever PC and wanted a bit of advice on a few of the parts I have chosen. I'm not a PC gamer, I keep to the 360 for that.

This is going to be the basis of my Home Recording Studio, I dont want a super fast mega super beast, just want something that will run vista with ease and let me dual monitor with some nice HTPC features.

Anyway here are first parts I had in mind. Please feel free to advise me and comment away.
Budget is around £250 - reason im buying from Microdirect too is because its just up the road so wont be paying postage :)

Case - http://www.microdirect.co.uk/Home/Product/39687/In-Win-case-EM020-micro-ATX-black-silver-400W

Motherboard - http://www.microdirect.co.uk/Home/Product/26676/Gigabyte-motherboard-GA-73PVM-S2H-GeForce-7100

Ram - http://www.microdirect.co.uk/Home/Product/38450/OCZ-Memory-4GB-Kit--2x2048--Titanium-Edition-Dual

Other bits such as HDD etc will be added when I have the basis set up.

Cheers
RnRDave Avatar
7y, 9m agoPosted 7 years, 9 months ago
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banned#1
£250 for a "Home Recording Studio"

Hmm.
banned#2
why don't you buy from ebuyer? much cheaper. play.com is cheaper for ram, was for me anyway
#3
vibeone
£250 for a "Home Recording Studio"

Hmm.


No.

Thats just for the computer that will be the basis of my studio/HTPC.

I am by no means going to be going any million pound productions, just something that will run Pro Tools fine to do some basic/decent recordings.
#4
seanbwfc
why don't you buy from ebuyer? much cheaper. play.com is cheaper for ram, was for me anyway


Will have a look on Play as they offer free delievery.

Reason for MD is cause its just up the road :)
#5
I'm a bedroom producer and tech nerd myself, so I can probably give you a lot of useful guidance. Before I spend any time writing something though, what kind of music are you planning to work with?
#6
dxx
I'm a bedroom producer and tech nerd myself, so I can probably give you a lot of useful guidance. Before I spend any time writing something though, what kind of music are you planning to work with?


That would be great.

Just gunna be doing rough recordings for my own bands, guitar based stuff, indie/rock/prog

Planning on getting an Mbox mini 2 and running pro tools 7.
#7
RnRDave
That would be great.

Just gunna be doing rough recordings for my own bands, guitar based stuff, indie/rock/prog

Planning on getting an Mbox mini 2 and running pro tools 7.


Hm, prog. I suppose, at least it's not jazz, which would've been insta-fail. I just couldn't bring myself to help anyone who might inflict such filth upon the world. Guitar-based indie and rock is alright though. Anyway, I'm away to nip for a shower, I'll scribble down all the advice that I can think of off the top of my head after that.
#8
ccl and misco also worth checking for comparative quotes


dont forget quidco/topcashback
#9
Cheers guys, can anyone comment on the components I posted.

Dont worry about price too much.

Looking at about £80 max on mobo tho if anyone wants to recommend another with integrated graphics or cheap mobo & graphics card?
#10
TBH you will want to wait for a few month till windows 7 come out.

Gigabyte DS3 mobo
Intel Core 2 2.2 ghz
2gb Corsair 800mhz ram
Nvidia 9600 gt (as you wont be playing games)
Case or your choice.

should be cheap and should do everything you want.
1 Like #11
I'm not going to comment on the individual parts you've picked, but here's a stack of tips

1) Don't use an nVidia motherboard. Intel chipsets give far tighter latencies and with fewer latency spikes. A P35-based board would be idea.

2) Latency is a very important factor. The lower the latency your system has, the lower you can set your audio interfaces's latency before you start getting pops, crackles, and dropouts.

3) Use WinXP 32bit. Vista and Win7 both suffer from obscene amounts of latency and regular latency spikes, even after being tweaked and tuned to perfection. A 64bit OS is good if you're drawing upon enormous sample libraries, but M-Audio's 64bit support is lousy at best. 32bit is best for software and hardware compatability.

4) If you want to use the system for multiple purposes, you'd do well to have one installaiton of Windows dedicated to music production, and another dedicated to all the other stuff you do. Remember, one unwanted popup during a recording session can cause a dropout.

5) A motherboard with onboard firewire is an alrightish thing, but it's not always ideal. Most motherboards come with firewire ports controlled by a Via chip, while most firewire audio equipment is designed, I'm told, more with Texas Instruments' chipsets in mind. That said, my M-Audio NRV10 works fine with both of my Via-based contrllers.

6) The CPU I'd probably go for, given your budget, would probably be the Intel E2220. Natch, further research is required to make sure that I'm not getting my facts wrong here, but I believe it's the 2.4GHz version of Intel's current dual-core line, except with only 2MB of L2 cache rather than 6MB. I think it's physically the same chip, only with part of the L2 cache disabled due to it not passing Intel's quality checks. You still get really good performance and excellent reliability (your CPU just won't even think about the parts that have been disabled), and they're a bargain at around £60.

7) Protools isn't that good. Unless you've any pressing need to use it, I'd recommend Cakewalk Sonar or Cubase over it. I know that it's the industry stnadard and everything, but you've got to remember, it's an industry of luddites that need inter-compatability and that don't like new things especially when they are told that Protools is the best. But it's not. Not in my experience of it, anyway. Try out the alternatives before comitting to Protools

8) There's an app called Guitar Rig 3. Go and buy it. It makes recording guitars so easy that it hurts, and it's so good that I sold my JCM2000 in preference of it.
#12
I can't comment on the audio side of things but generally:

9) On motherboards with integrated graphics don't assume that more than one video output will be usable at one time unless this is explicitely stated by the website or a review. If you want dual monitors you may end up with a cheap graphics card.

10) Buy a cheap power supply at your peril, I'd recommend a case without a power supply and then spending £30 on a 300-400W PSU.

11) Cheap/small cases can be frustrating to build in, so if you haven't got much to spend it's worth checking that none of the parts your ordering appear to be much bigger or a different size from average.

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